When can the public ride the trains?
The Public is permitted to ride trains during the spring, fall, and winter meets only. Before riding, a Release Waiver must be signed and on file with the club. During the meets, a booth is setup at the passenger station so the public can read and signed the wavier before getting on the train. Due to safety concerns, pregnant woman are not permitted to ride trains. Children 18 months and younger must be secured to the front of an adult in a baby carrier, sling or wrap.
What times can the public ride the trains?
Spring & Fall Meets: The Public can ride the trains from 10:00 AM until 4:00 PM ( Thursday, Friday & Saturday )
Winter Meet: The Public can ride the trains from 10:00 AM until 2:00 PM ( Friday & Saturday )
The wavier desk will close thirty (30) minutes prior to the station closing each day.
At that time, no additional persons will be allowed into the passenger waiting line.
How much does it cost (price) to ride the trains?
Rides are given free of charge during the three public meets each year! During the public meets, donation boxes are located at the waiver trailer and on the station platform, if you so wish to make one.
How long is the wait time at the station for a ride?
The wait time at the passenger station is largely dependent on weather and day of the week. The shortest wait times are on Thursday and Friday of the public meets, especially when the station opens at 10 AM. The average wait time on these days can range from none to one hour, depending on crowd size. Saturdays are the busiest day, with lines reaching over 300 passengers at times. The average wait time on a Saturday is one to two hours, depending on crowd size.
Do the passenger trains run in Inclement Weather?
During inclement weather, passenger trains are not able to run. All passenger trains will stop operations and will not resume until the weather has passed and a track inspection can be completed.
Does the club sell merchandise such as T-shirts?
At the public meets, the club does sell t-shirts, hats, patches and others items branded with the club's logo & name. These items are sold at the information desk located under the pavilion by the red caboose. A limited selection of our items can also be purchased from the waiver trailer while you wait in line for your ride.
How does the club get funding for the track & facilities?
The club is supported by member dues, member donations, and donations from the public. The Club is a 501(c)(3) tax exempt organization. We receive no tax money from the city, county or state, and are not supported by taxpayers in any way. The club purchases all of the materials and provides all of the labor to build and maintain the track and all supporting structures. The track and facility costs a lot to maintain, so public financial support is very much appreciated. We are grateful to Maury County Park and the citizens to have our facility located in such a wonderful park since 1973!
What size are the trains and track?
Most equipment operated on our track is one-eighth the size of prototype railroad equipment. The rails are spaced 7 1/2 inches apart. This means the trains are a comfortable size to ride on, but not too big to transport. The engines weigh anywhere from 100 to 2000 pounds, and can pull from one to 50+ people, depending on size.
How many live steam clubs are out there?
It is hard to put a number on how many clubs exist. There are a few clubs in public parks, more on private or donated lands, and even more backyard railroads then one could visit in a lifetime.
Where can you get this type of equipment?
Several vendors manufacture plans, parts, partial assembled, or ready-to-run locomotives and cars. It is common to build some or all of their equipment yourself with either pre-designed kits or from scratch. Many families work together to assemble kits as it is fun and a way to share interests.
Do I have to own any equipment to attend a public meet?
Not at all. Our club is devoted to the enjoyment of live steam. We welcome everyone out to the track to learn about and enjoy live steamers in action. If you are interested in joining the club, please click here for more information.
I've heard these trains are really expensive! Is that true?
Like in any hobby, there are many options when it comes to equipment. Some engines can cost almost $50,000 while others only a few thousand. It is not necessary to spend all your money to have a beautiful train. Many people have built their engine from scratch and fabricate their own cars and save thousands while others buy ready to run engines and cars from vendors. There are several options when it comes to getting into this hobby. If you are interested in buying your own engine or cars, the best advice is to ask around and see what people recommend.
How do the steam locomotives operate?
In almost all cases, they operate just like real locomotives. Coal, Oil, or LP gas is burned in a firebox and used to heat water to the boiling point. The resulting steam is sent to cylinders and used to drive pistons connected to the drive wheels. These locomotives are quite powerful and sound like what they are: a miniature version of the real thing.